Presentation Title

P-33 The Taxonomic Diversity of Microfossils among Selected Study Sites of the Black Mountain Turtle Layer

Presenter Status

Graduate Student, Biology

Second Presenter Status

Professor, Biology

Preferred Session

Poster Session

Start Date

26-10-2018 2:00 PM

End Date

26-10-2018 3:00 PM

Presentation Abstract

A model has been proposed for the deposition of specific fossil-rich horizons within the Bridger Formation, Wyoming. This model was developed to explain the unusually high density of turtle fossils found in certain stratigraphic intervals of these horizons. In this model, a lake system filled with volcanic ash causing a mass death of turtles in the lake, eventually changing the area from a lake system into a floodplain environment.

A subsequent study investigated microfossils from different geographic locations within one of the fossil-rich horizons, the Black Mountain Turtle Layer. A taxonomic analysis of the microfossils found that although aquatic taxa were present, the dominant taxa were terrestrial. This finding disagreed with the lake system model developed by the original study.

Further taxonomic analysis of more sites within the Black Mountain Turtle Layer, will give us a deeper understanding of the paleoenvironment. It will provide us with a better understanding of the taxonomic makeup of the Black Mountain Turtle Layer, which could have implications in understanding how ecosystems change over time. Extending the taxonomic analysis geographically could also help reconcile the differences between previous studies.

Acknowledgments

Special thanks to the Andrews University Graduate Grants in aid of Research and to the Andrews University Department of Biology for funding for my research.

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Oct 26th, 2:00 PM Oct 26th, 3:00 PM

P-33 The Taxonomic Diversity of Microfossils among Selected Study Sites of the Black Mountain Turtle Layer

A model has been proposed for the deposition of specific fossil-rich horizons within the Bridger Formation, Wyoming. This model was developed to explain the unusually high density of turtle fossils found in certain stratigraphic intervals of these horizons. In this model, a lake system filled with volcanic ash causing a mass death of turtles in the lake, eventually changing the area from a lake system into a floodplain environment.

A subsequent study investigated microfossils from different geographic locations within one of the fossil-rich horizons, the Black Mountain Turtle Layer. A taxonomic analysis of the microfossils found that although aquatic taxa were present, the dominant taxa were terrestrial. This finding disagreed with the lake system model developed by the original study.

Further taxonomic analysis of more sites within the Black Mountain Turtle Layer, will give us a deeper understanding of the paleoenvironment. It will provide us with a better understanding of the taxonomic makeup of the Black Mountain Turtle Layer, which could have implications in understanding how ecosystems change over time. Extending the taxonomic analysis geographically could also help reconcile the differences between previous studies.